The Puffin Party 2013

Big Bird!You know when someone asks who you’d invite to your dream
dinner party – well the annual Puffin Party is that dream come true. Last night
over 300 Puffins (authors, illustrators, agents, librarians and booksellers)
flocked to the OXO
Tower to quite simply
celebrate stories.

Our PR team have been busily planning for months. With so
many colourful characters attending, it’s no small feat finding a venue to
match. In the past we’ve gathered at Tate, Kensington Roof Gardens, the Natural History Museum and even the Irish
Embassy. This year the OXO
Tower, with its infamous
neon sign was sniffed out. Rising up from the London Southbank we could look out
across the Thames all the way to our very own offices in 80 Strand.
And while there wasn’t a stock cube in sight, you couldn’t miss the ENORMOUS puffin
poster, that caught the eye of local pigeons, twitchers and tourists alike.

The view from the gravy towerAt this point we’d like to thank you Mr Sunshine. We tip our
hat right back at you because with the balcony windows flung wide, the evening
rays shone through lighting up the conversation.

 I often say that the most overheard word at Puffin is ' lovely'. And at an event like this you can see why. Tottering between @createfood teeny-tiny
canapés we made conversation with our childhood heroes –even as a grown-up
Flying Puffinssome
of our authors can leave you star struck. Here's just a few who were in attendance Meg Rosoff, Charlie Higson (both pictured below with Francesca Dow, Managing Director of Penguin Children's), Sally Green, Lauren Child,
Julia Donaldson, Michelle Paver, Cathy Cassidy, Phil Earle, Curtis Jobling,
Anna Perera, Rachel Bright, Adam Stower, Anthony McGowan, Jeanne Willis, Luke
Jennings and Jacqueline Wilson! 

Yummy nibbles!Writers talked about  everything from words and stories
and e-stories and inspiration and zombies to adventure and hobbits and gravy and rock
climbing and kindles and gruffalos and the fens and St Pauls and notebooks and
seahorses and . . . well, as you can imagine –anything that has been or ever will
be imagined!

One guest remarked that when the invitation arrived she felt
like she’d made it. I think we all feel that little flutter sometimes,
but there’s something else about this turn of phrase – as Willy Wonka is so
fond of saying, ‘No wait, reverse it’. Because truth be told it is all our
lovely authors,illustrators, librarians, agents, booksellers and readers that make Puffin so
wonderful. Thank you to all of you because, after all, it’s you who make it. Our story is yours – see you next year . . . . 

Fancesca Dow, Meg Rosoff, Charlie Higson

A very happy Puffin, Penguin Children's Marketing